Hannah Brown is peeling back the curtain and sharing a part of her life that fans don't always see.
On Wednesday, Feb. 10, The Bachelorette alum posted a personal video on YouTube, in which she opened up about the pressure she's put on herself when it comes to her appearance.
Starting at a young age, the former pageant queen recalled comparing herself to magazine models."I had a really round face...," she recalled, "I still do now, and [I had] huge dimples, so everybody would always comment on my little chubby face."
The reality TV personality also shared that she "always hated" her legs and felt insecure about not having a thigh gap, especially after a girl in her middle school dance class made a comment about what "perfect legs" should look like.
As a high schooler, she remembered peers telling her, "I was pretty, but I was a little curvy or thick."
"If they only knew how much that hurt me," she added, "because I struggled with it so much."
The 26-year-old star said her body image issues became worse once she entered the pageant world as a teen.
She explained that she went on an "extreme diet" after someone close to her, who she didn't name, suggested she eat and drink only liquids to lose 15 lbs.
"I remembered I was hungry. I was so, so hungry," she recalled of dieting during those pageant competitions. "As soon as I stopped [dieting], after the pageant, I was literally starving... all the weight came back on and more. That was really hard for me... that started the constant yo-yo that I've had for so long."
As she put it, "I just messed my metabolism up so bad because it was always an extreme."
Hannah also noted that she was constantly told that if she lost a certain amount of weight "she could do anything she ever wanted," which led to a struggle with anxiety and depression.
"I was so scared of gaining the weight... I definitely think I struggled with an eating disorder. I had disordered eating, that is for sure," she shared. "I would work out in the mornings with a trainer and I was so small and had no energy that I couldn't even really do the workouts..."
Hannah's experience going from The Bachelor to The Bachelorette and then to Dancing With the Stars only reinforced those habits. As she explained of her time on the 28th season of the dancing show, which she won, "It's hard when you're always around other beautiful, professional women that dance. I was so hard on myself..."
These days, however, Hannah is focused on loving herself from the inside out.
"It's always been this constant struggle of worthiness. When I think back on it all, I wasn't any happier at any time. The whole issue with it all was I didn't have any self-worth through all that," she said. "I've definitely struggled with accepting the way my body is now... I'm like, 'No, Hannah! Cut the crap and learn to have a healthy lifestyle and accept how your body is.'"
"I needed to dig deep emotionally in who I want to be," she added, "...Thank goodness I've grown and I've changed and so has my body."
For Hannah, she hopes that sharing her story will help anyone dealing with the same struggles.
Watch her full video above.